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New Wastewater Analysis Method Saves Money and Ensures Regulatory Compliance

Environmental media – from water supplies to wastewater and soil – can be put at risk by a multitude of compounds and materials that are often difficult to identify without careful analysis.

For facility operators, being able to effectively identify and manage these materials becomes very important in today’s regulatory environment. Remediation, treatment techniques, permit applicability and compliance with regulatory requirements all hinge on fully understanding what those compounds and materials are.

ONE Environmental Group has vast experience not only investigating and resolving the issues such materials present, but also developing brand new analytical methods in the lab that are helping clients address those issues with more speed and precision than ever before.

Some of these new methods are being incorporated into permit or plan requirements to overcome the limitations of traditional analytical methods.

Grit in Wastewater Method Saves the Day

For example, a facility operator recently turned to the ONE team for an analytical method that would help measure polymer beads in their wastewater stream. The original method required by a permit was inadequate and overstating the actual values, putting the client at risk of a $150,000 penalty.

The ONE team went to work investigating and managing the development of a new Grit in Wastewater Method. This novel and creative analytical approach enabled the client to successfully dispute the erroneous results of the traditional analytical method and implement a new, accurate and sensible method to show compliance going forward.

In addition to bringing the client back into permit compliance and avoiding penalties, the Grit in Wastewater Method also:

  • Lowered compliance costs for operating additional treatment systems.
  • Helped identify upstream process errors.
  • Reduced product loss and associated expenses.

The client’s relationship with regulatory agencies also improved thanks to the success of the new analytical method as a tool for effectively finalizing and verifying the status of facility compliance.

Comprehensive Portfolio of Investigative Approaches

The ONE team is also well versed in many other creative investigative approaches such as investigative microscopy, which can identify microscopic particles down to 8 microns in size. This powerful approach is used to identify unknowns and organic/inorganic substances. Particles may include fibers, contaminants, coatings, wastewater constituents or residues and build-up of polymers. Investigative microscopy can also be used for failure analysis.

Other types of microscopy and spectroscopy used by ONE Environmental Group to help clients calculate exactly what and how much is in their mediums include:

  • Stereomicroscopy
  • Polarized Light Microscopy (PLM)
  • Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM)
  • Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) / FTIR Microscopy
  • Energy Dispersive Spectroscopy (EDS)

Methods such as instrumental wet chemistry testing are also used by ONE to qualitatively assess compound samples or to quantitatively measure the compound quantities in a given sample.

Selecting the right investigative approach for the job, ONE Environmental Group is able to help clients slash costs and confidently maintain regulatory compliance – bringing peace of mind during increasingly challenging times.